Klitschko: Experience will be my trump card

LONDON • Wladimir Klitschko believes that experience will give him the edge when he faces Anthony Joshua for the International Boxing Federation (IBF) and World Boxing Association (WBA) heavyweight titles at Wembley Stadium in London on April 29.

Klitschko, who turns 41 next month, first won the World Boxing Organisation heavyweight title in 2000, eight years before Joshua, 27, first stepped into a boxing gym.

Going into a bout as the challenger for the first time in 11 years, Klitschko says that he has the know-how to regain the belts that he lost to Tyson Fury 15 months ago.

"You can be as good as you are, professional as you are, as athletic or strong, but the only thing you can't swallow like a pill is experience," Klitschko said.

"I just recently heard it at the New York press conference from Anthony, that it's all about a mental game.

"But I'm not playing games, I'm serious with what I'm doing."

Klitschko will head off to his regular training camp in the Austrian Alps on March 1, having blocked boxing from his mind during Christmas.

"To be a professional in the sport and to be an expert, it means that everyone has time for certain things," Klitschko said.

"During Christmas time and the new year I didn't think about anything to do with the fight."

Klitschko is trying to pass on his experience and last year lectured at the University of St Gallen, in Switzerland, on a four-month business course.

"Experience is like a suitcase, without a grip - it's really heavy to carry, but you feel bad if you're going to let it sit somewhere," he added.

THE TIMES, LONDON

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on February 21, 2017, with the headline 'Klitschko: Experience will be my trump card'. Print Edition | Subscribe